Species #142 — Dimerus Cichlid

I didn’t make the ID for this fish. I emailed the three different cichlids I caught that day. I caught several of each, and Ryan Crutchfield of fishmap.org helped me identify them.

Species: Dimerus Cichlid (Cichlasoma dimerus)
Location: Orlando, Florida
Date: July 8, 2018

“Dimerus Cichlid” is the currently-accepted common name for Cichlasoma dimerus. It looks different from Black Acara at first glance, but it’s hard to place.

Here are the key distinguising features:

1) It isn’t as dark.

2) The fins don’t flow or flutter out as much.

3) Its lateral line isn’t as strongly spotted or striped.

4) The dorsal fin isn’t as long.

Unlike the Jack Dempsey, its range is expanding across Florida. Since most cichlids can hybridize, identifying them is going to be even more fun moving forward.

#SpeciesQuest // #CaughtOvgard

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #143 — Bowfin.

Species #141 — Jack Dempsey Cichlid

The Jack Dempsey Cichlid was so named for the 1920s boxer whose aggressive nature and toughness made him famous. Jack Dempsey’s are one of the prettiest fish around.

Species: Jack Dempsey Cichlid (Rocio octofasciata)
Location: Orlando, Florida
Date: July 8, 2018

The Jack Dempsey Cichlid was one of a few “longshots” I had on my Target List for my visit to Orlando. I knew they’d been recorded, but based on my research, only in scattered pockets, isolated ponds, and the like.

In fact, their range is supposed to be decreasing, rather than increasing.

Well, if the half dozen or so I landed are any indication, they’re still holding out in a few places, prancing around the ring and refusing to give up.

Apparently, they’ll need a knockout punch rather than a judge’s decision to finally admit defeat.

#SpeciesQuest // #CaughtOvgard

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #142 — Dimerus Cichild.

Species #140 — Black Acara

The Black Acara is one of half a dozen cichlids common in Florida.

Species: Black Acara (Cichlasoma bimaculatum)
Location: Orlando, Florida
Date: July 8, 2018

I was told these would be easy to catch. Once I found them, that proved true. Unfortunately, I struck out several times before finding the sweet spot.

Alas, it was worth the wait.

When I did find them, I also found half a dozen other species, including sunfish, killifish, and two more cichlids.

The Black Acara doesn’t get very big, but is is a pretty species. Since cichlids are generally a hot mess in terms of genetic purity and capable of hybridizing with dozens of others. This made identification even more difficult, but I managed.

It was actually Ryan Crutchfield of fishmap.org who helped me identify it, as well as the surprise species I caught minutes later.

#SpeciesQuest // #CaughtOvgard

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #141 — Jack Dempsey Cichild.